The organizational behavior within the Black Lives Matter movement is more important than you thought

Jessica Rocha Moniz

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In our modern world, we are dealing every day with the different behaviors of people within whichever environment you may be in today or tomorrow. Sometimes we can understand where such behavior comes from, but other times, we don’t have any indicator about why that kind of behavior exists or occurs. For example, for many, their first encounter with other people’s behavior was when they were little kids (in kindergarten). While playing with the other kids, you were exposed to different types of behavior, and, depending on how you behave, people will assume if you are a good kid or a badly behaved kid. All this is something that, as an individual, you will keep experiencing up until your last day of life. Through your life as a student, teacher, parent, priest, president, manager, and so on, you will learn how to deal with the behavior of others and what is the best way to do it. That’s why the term organizational behavior will keep playing a role in your life because it helps you understand others behavior as well as make others understand yours (Tutorials Point, Google). Although organizational behavior is an applied discipline, students are not “trained in organizational behavior. Rather, they are educated in organizational behavior and are a co-producer in learning” (Nelson & Quick, 2011, p. 25).

The Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement

According to the Graduate School of Stanford Business, “In the field of organizational behavior, we research fundamental questions about the behavior of individuals, groups, and organizations, from both psychological and sociological perspectives”. We will always see organizational behavior more visible within companies, government, and among ourselves, but this concept has also a strong “influence” on political and social movements. Hence, this article will focus on organizational behavior within the Black Lives Matter Movement. On May 25, 2020, the day after a Minneapolis police officer killed George Floyd, more than 15 million Americans took to the streets and protested the extreme racial injustice that had taken place. All these protests avalanches have resulted in the Black Lives Matter movement, which had become the frontline of each newspaper and news in America.

The impact mindset within the BLM movement

Once the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement erupted, millions of supporters came together for the same purpose, and each one may have their own reasons for joining the movement. The point here is that this BLM movement has separated the United States (and the world) between two groups of people (racists and non-racists) with different behaviors against racism (the colossal and visible racial injustice that exists). Besides, this racial injustice act has had a massive personal effect on black Americans more than on white Americans. In addition, according to research finding, most people have decided to participate in the BLM movement because all of them shares the same impulsion when it comes to racial identity. In other words, all the black supporters have joined the BLM movement through a form of strategic thinking known as “impact mindset”, which means that they always think about how their decisions can have/ make an impact on others (Preeti Vani, researcher at Graduate School of Stanford Business).

Your social standing and skin tone decide for you

We all know that this BLM movement(s) wouldn’t even occur if it wasn’t for the poor social systems that most countries may have. Especially in the United States. It is a reality that how police officers and other individuals treat you largely depends on your social standing and skin tone. Here we need to specify that most police officers like to utilize their power to put themselves above the other citizens, and because of this, they behave as if they can do anything they want. On the other side, each person of a different race (that lives in America) has their own reasons and strategic thinking about how they will behave with others or, in this case, with police officers. The explanation for this is that we have seen that not only black people but also people like Hispanics or Asians are suffering any kind of discrimination in the United States. It is as if being different and having a distinct appearance makes you immediately unwelcomed and degrades your position to an inferior status. Therefore, the majority of Americans who are of different ethnicity have come to identify with the situation. However, it has become clear that the BLM movement "impact mindset" has inspired White Americans, Asians, Hispanics, and Black Americans to unite in a commitment to social change.

From peaceful to a completely violent environment

That’s why it was clear to notice that the way these black Americans (and other people/races) were behaving during this act and the BLM movement was in some way passive-aggressive. They were trying to seek justice for George Floyd and change the racial injustice that had taken place against Black Americans in a “demanding” way without causing harm to any persona. However, this movement has come to a certain point where people have become aggressive because, on one side, they started fights and discussions among each other (mostly between racists and non-racists or police officers), while on the other side, others were using this moment of movement to break into people’s businesses to steal things. So, here we are clearly seeing that people were changing the environment from one peaceful to another environment completely violent, which gave the police officers a signal that it was the moment to let the chillness aside and get into the position to “fight”. If we examine how the police behaved during the start of the BLM movement, we can assure with confidence that they were calm and simply in control of the situation without endangering anyone. There were some moments where we saw that the protestors were speaking to the police officers, hoping they could convince them to let “their guard down” and support them with the movement. At first glance, one could see that some of the police officers have backed out of their rigid guard and have shown respect by kneeling as a sign of respect and support. Nonetheless, most police officers didn’t move from their place (even though they may want it) because they were given the order not to do it.

Behaviors within technology

Thanks to technology (social media), the Black Lives Matter movement became so powerful and known internationally. Nearly every movement's supporter documented what was happening (during the movement) on film and in images, which they all posted on social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and others. These reached such a point where even people on social networks shared photos and videos until the moment when everyone, celebrities, influencers, and others, put a completely black image as a sign that they support the movement.


By looking into all this, we can say that there is a clear and visible relationship between the black supporters and the other supporters. The black supporters have a high-powered reason to support the BLM movement, which concerns the fact that they are upset and worried about the injustices that people of their same color have been experiencing, while the other non-black people are supporting the racial injustice movement because they believe that needs to be equality for everyone no matter your skin color. Even though the initial stream of the BLM movement had died down, we can still see that minding how our decisions can impact others has led to a greater engagement with the BLM movement over time and with social change.


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